For some time now I have been feeling restless and after deep thinking (The kind of thinking that you do in the bathroom in the morning after an insane night of binge drinking), I realized that the reason of this restlessness is that I don’t feel special any more.
You see, I have always had a feeling that I am special (Not “retarded – special” you dimwit!!). The knowledge of being special always gave a great boost to my ego and thus my confidence levels and lately I had been missing the feeling of being special.
I know I am digressing but I don’t want you to think of me as an arrogant prick when I declare myself special. I think it’s important that you should know that I was as uncomfortable accepting this fact as you are.
I came to accept the fact that I am special only after years and years of differential treatment given to me right from my childhood which continued in my formative years in school and college. I had always attempted to be an average kid however as you know life is unfair and I was always accorded a special status. At the beginning of each academic year, I remember choosing the middle benches to sit (In case you don’t know, those are the safest) and hardly a month would pass before I was found either standing in the corner of the classroom all the time or made to sit in front bench where the teachers could keep an eye on me all the time. In fact by the time I came to senior classes apparently my name was also included in new teacher’s orientation sessions. Thank god!! I was born with a positive frame of mind so I always took this differential treatment as a sign of me being special.
Lately this feeling was missing. I was doing exactly the same things that everyone around me was doing. Go to office, come home, play with kid, play with dog, be the dog, be the pig, sleep and again go back to office. I have a feeling that I might have mentioned something in my previous sentence which will have huge repercussion once I publish this but anyway I guess you get the idea of my life. I had become a lame duck. Not the metaphorical lame duck, either, but a real duck that was actually lame maybe from stepping on a landmine or something and I hated it.
As with all the problems that I face, I went to my wife with this one as well and the brilliant woman that she is, she had an immediate solution to it as well. “Get a hobby, which uses your creativity and makes you feel special”. Voila; it was as simple as that. All I had to do was to get a nice hobby. By now I am sure you know I am a methodical guy (In case you are one of the unfortunate souls who haven’t gone through my previous posts then I just made this discovery easy for you, isn’t it). So owing to my nature I have made a list of hobbies that I evaluated and discarded before selecting the final one. The one which made me feel special about myself, helped me brag and show others yet another quality of mine which they don’t have.
Bird Watching – Three different drawbacks here. One; what do you do once you have seen an exotic bird? Nothing, you just let it fly away so no tangible result to show off to anyone. I mean what will I tell my wife if she asked me what did I do for last 4 hours? You think she will accept the answer “bird watching” cheerfully?? Two; where do you go to watch these birds? All I see around my house is that stupidly grinning old black enemy of mine which keeps dropping the sticky gooey mess on my terrace right after I clean it. If I have to see the exotic ones I need to take lot of leaves and pay for lot of travel; both actions detrimental to my employment status as well as the meager savings I generate out of it. Three; How do you know if a bird is worth watching? By reading about them?? But here is the problem - I have never been able to read anything with an eye to benefit from the knowledge that it will yield. (Don’t trust me – ask me any question from any subject from 5th grade and ask me about any of the Spiderman’s adventures; you will see)
Dee-Jaying – I am not sure how it is spelt but I am sure you know that I am referring to the young dudes in the darkest corner of nightclubs who keep playing one fast number after the other with a crowd of girls and aunties swooning over them. Personally I never thought Dee-Jaying to be very creative. After all, I had done it on a just a little smaller scale during my roadside Romeo days. Yes, it wasn’t easy to select the right song with right lyrics and then time the playing of it to the crossing of my favorite girls through my street but heck, it wasn’t that tough either. Anyhoo, with this motivating thought I went to the DJ and asked if he could teach me to be one. It could be my unshaved beard with more salt than pepper in it, it could be my condescending tone or maybe, just maybe, it was my expression when he told his training fees and the cost of basic instruments; his face suddenly acquired that pensive artistic expression which can be best described just as a mixture of pity and irritation combined. I also got a sneaking feeling that he was trying to discourage me by quoting higher rates (C’mon; how costly two disc players can be from the double deck cassette player that I used) and being a firm believer of value for money concept I left the discussion there itself.
Photography – I am confident now that this hobby doesn’t need creativity and discarded it at the first glance itself. Today the basic idea of photography as I understood was to get yourself broke buyin a fancy camera (last I checked it was 150,000 INR for a nice camera and basic lenses), break your back carrying it and then wait for something nice to happen when you can turn the camera towards it in burst mode and pray that out of the 47 shots at least one should be able to get you a “Photo of the week” award on one of the thousands of photography sites where all they give you after winning is an online tag. Sorry bud! If I invest so much, the least I expect is that the damn thing should be able to carry itself and take pictures by itself. That’s not going to happen so clearly it’s not for me.
I evaluated many others hobbies as well but we will talk about my opinions on them later since those evaluations included me getting further reminded of my age, wages and tastes in life. Cutting a long story short, someone introduced me to blogging. Now here was a medium which of course needs creativity (Occasional INSPIRATIONS from other blogs not withstanding, needs absolutely no investment and suddenly brings you high up in the pseudo intellectual ladder so preferred in the cocktail party discussions. I can go on and on about the virtues of this medium however since I can hear my son screaming from the restroom asking me to come and clean him; lets save that for some other time.